It’s important to practice while traveling. Whether it’s for a gig, an audition, a cross-country drive, or even vacation, musicians need to stay in shape and keep their skills sharp. There are some strategies that we can employ to stay on top of our game.
I’ve already publicly stated my love for Southwest Airlines for auditions, but now I want to share one of the greatest tools of the frequent traveler’s trade: the Southwest Companion Pass.
What this wonderful little tool does is allows the holder to designate a companion and take them on any Southwest flight for free, regardless if you paid in cash, gift cards, or points. Well, almost free: you have to pay the tax on the fare (which is $5.60 each way for domestic flights). It’s valid for the remainder of the calendar year and the following year until December 31st. That means you could potentially hold it for two years. And the best part: with the strategy I outline, you’ll have around $3,500 worth of flights for free.
Anatomy of a Free Audition
You go to the musicalchairs website and see your dream job posted. You submit your perfectly polished résumé and wait for a response. Two weeks later you receive the email that you’re invited! You print out the audition repertoire list and start practicing several hours a day, but there’s still one caveat – how do you get to the audition without going broke? Here’s how I took an audition for the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra a few months ago and paid a total of $11 on travel.